The sun keeps peeking out from behind the clouds in what I believe is now called a ‘Simpsons Sky’. It is teasing me, flirting unashamedly with me as I sit writing this blog. A little while ago I nipped upstairs to retrieve from its winter resting place my inflatable neck cushion, it is ready to inflate and place around my neck as I head off to the recliner in the garden. That is where I am heading shortly to entertain my neighbours with a chorus of grunts and snores as I eventually, inevitably nod off. My mate Bill has just been texting me to confirm that we will be meeting in the woods tomorrow for our weekly Wild Wednesday workout, I did my 100 X 100 press-ups early this morning, I actually did 4 sets of 50, but strangely still feel guilty about heading off into the garden. My heart is wanting to put in an hour on some steady circuit but my head, and my droopy eyelids, is/are telling me to rest, it is a quality over quantity argument.

Rest is an important part of any training activity, you can easily over train. A few months back I was pushing it on the weights and did five consecutive days working the same muscle groups, it felt great I was pumping, until I pumped a little too much. I then was forced to rest as an injury occurred, a similar injury that I had after my third dan black belt grading. Then the injury went on for months, this time I was at the physio within a couple of days. The cure, rest. Simple. I knew the risks in what I was doing but had allowed myself to become a little blinkered as I pursued my goals, I ignored my own advice to others and self, work hard, play hard but rest as well. This applies to all muscles that we use regularly including the brain. There comes a time when we are no longer productive and we need to stop what we are doing and recharge those batteries. Take a look at the video.

Many years ago we went camping in Scandinavia, we took the ferry from Newcastle to Stavanger in Norway, camped for a few nights not too far away then decided to drive towards Oslo. Norway has strict laws on booze and driving. It may have strict laws on other things but these two I know about, booze was/is VERY expensive, ten years ago lager was £4 a can, yes one can, it cost an arm and a leg. Only special shops can sell it and it is strictly controlled, when we produced a 3 litre wine box we were observed with astonished and envious eyes. However, let us move forward with this tale. The speed limits are very strict and enforced with an efficiency that makes the Germans look sloppy. The fastest we could go was 30 miles an hour and that was in the countryside and the number of speed cameras was staggering, prior to going to Norway I read that when driving there you were at less risk of being hit by a drunk driver than you were from being hit by a car where the driver had fallen asleep at the wheel. Surely that had to be a bit of a joke?

No it was not, let me tell you that after 3 hours behind the wheel with you maximum 30 miles an hour hardly ever reached, and down to 10 in towns and villages, you then know what tired is. After about 3 hours I had to pull over and have a sleep, it was like torture, you were mentally and physically worn down by a complete lack of speed. I have done many long journeys around, across and up and down europe, I love driving in France and Germany where the motorways do not have a middle lane full of absolute $%£&* clogging up the whole system. People USE their rear view mirrors and LET OTHER PEOPLE PASS THEM. They do behave strangely these foreigners. Norway really does take the biscuit, if ever I go there again I will not take the car. Never again do I want to feel the mind numbing tedium I felt driving there, it is such a beautiful country, expensive, but beautiful and I loved bathing in Oslo Fjord but I needed a holiday within a holiday after the driving. My body and brain just needed half an hour of complete shutdown in order for me to be able to continue.

The sun is till playing hide and seek, it is lovely and warm when it is out but not as pleasant when it goes back in. The other day in a brief respite from the monsoon I fell asleep in my recliner and awoke chilly and confused. The sun had charmed me out of the house, lulled me into the land of nod and then buggered off and left me abandoned like a Prime Ministers daughter in a boozer. Today I hope it will not be as brief a visit to the land of nod. My tired eyes need to checkout the insides of my eyelids. I want to dream for a short period, I need to rest up before tonight’s big game on TV and hope my dreams are not ruined prematurely by either a receding sun or the Ukrainians. Toodle pip, Garry is off for a kip. Enjoy Frankies advice and RELAX, take time off and enjoy, X.

Now where is that sun tan lotion…….